By writing far more frequently, especially by following the lingering thread of an ongoing tale. I find that my writing has taken on a voice of it’s own, by casually disregarding possibly everything I ever learned at University about creative writing, by freely allowing influences I adore slipping into my words, the silken literature of Michael Moorcock, the flamboyant style of Lovecraft creep into my typing, because I let them, I don’t agonise over every single word I add to the screen, I am guilty of over using words, I actually deliberately include more than I should… Because I can, I am not policing my tale for any editor, I no longer hold any desire to be published, I write because I love writing, I adore the freedom of expression and the way my silly little tale is taking on a life of its own. It might never grace any printing press, but that’s not the issue, I write to give my characters breath.
Curiously I found an old tale I wrote at the beginning of my creative writing course. At a point in time where I wanted every word to be perfect, I wanted to prove myself as a potential author. I was a very different writer, for I felt restricted by the rules of writing and this need for perfection and it just doesn’t read right, I actually don’t like it, but I’m going to share it with you, because I might just be adding these characters to my story.
*Insert evil laughter*
1297 DR: Year of the Singing Skull
Pain registered quickly as he reeled backwards from the sudden swift attack, he put his left leg back a step to balance himself and acting purely on an internal instinct he spun around and kicked back with his leading leg. Striking his brother hard in his ribs with his boot, even before he had recoiled from the unexpected punch to the jaw, which had abruptly ended the argument with violence.
From somewhere behind the stars blurring his vision he heard his third brother chuckling at this discord, this only inflamed his rage even more and he turned to face his youngest sibling, hatred seething in his eyes as he wiped fresh blood from his chin, his lip split and stung. The fog lifted in his mind and he promptly glanced over his shoulder, to where his elder brother had recovered already from the blow to his ribs and regaining his breath.
So far none of them had reached for any of the weapons they carried upon their persons, but the frustration between the three siblings was ignited and after the first blows and it only took a split second to erupt into chaos. Aston tackled his middle brother, Bane, launching towards his mid-drift and tackling him to the floor, Cassius hesitated, but he knew he couldn’t avoid the conflict. He saw an advantage to side with Aston and as the two older men fell to the dust he kicked Bane in this side of his head, it was a cowardly attack, seeing as they wrestled and exchanged punches in the dirt. But Cassius’s action gave Aston the instant he needed to disable Bane with a violent chop with the edge of his hand right into his throat.
Bane gagged and coughed violently retching as Aston regained his footing and stood over him. “I suppose you believe I owe you for your help?” Aston spoke without turning to face Cassius; it wasn’t a question as much as a warning and Cassius felt a cold dread wave through him, aware that his skills could never outmatch Aston. Swallowing hard against the angry lump in his throat, he fought back his fear of his eldest brother. “I want the knife!” He demanded, finding courage in his own words, even though there was a slight tremor to his voice. “You have nothing I want!” Aston snapped back without hesitation, stealing some of the lads’ bravado, “Unlike this ‘Shebali’!” Aston spat to the ground near Bane’s head insulting him with a vile term in their language for ‘outcast’.
Bane fought to push down his rising fear as he struggled to regain his breath and hold onto the edge of consciousness, stunned by the betraying kick to his skull. He was in trouble and he knew it, Aston wanted ‘The Mirror’ and Bane felt as though the fight was fast slipping from him, yet he was unwilling to give up his prize so easily.
“I know where the ‘Sceptre’ is!” Bane tried to shout, but his voice was a broken croak. Though his words were enough to gain the attention of Cassius who raised an eyebrow and turned to regard his fallen sibling, Aston observed the simple change in facial expression and clenched his fists by his side. Cassius failed to notice this action else he would have expected the following attack.
However, Aston was unwilling to be embarrassed, by either his younger brothers and from the few words which had been expressed throughout this most recent violent encounter between the three brothers, he was starting to see a position where he could gain all three items of rare quality and possess them all to gain the strength and power it would take to over throw their father for the ownership of the guild. His mind swiftly followed this line of thought and almost without thinking he reached around behind his back to where a knife was concealed in a sheath between his shoulder blades, in one fluid motion he launched the deadly blade through the air, aimed directly at the unsuspecting Cassius.
Cassius’s eyes went wide with shock as he noticed the sudden flash of razor sharp steel, he sidestepped issuing forth a sudden cry in his surprise, the wicked blade drew a deep line across his ribs, he felt the searing pain rip through his torso and reached instinctively to the long gash across his belly, as blood poured freely, wet and warm over his trembling hands.
“ENOUGH!” It was a single direct order, from a voice which demanded respect. Simultaneously all three brothers turned to regard the source of the commandment, all of them aware that their father stood witness to this conflict.
Storm stepped from the shadows, like an oppressive force to be reckoned with, the shadows appeared to cling to the folds of his dark black cloak, giving him the impression that he was half surreal ethereal presence.
The brothers swallowed hard, near in unison. By now, Bane had regained his feet and stood together with Aston and Cassius.
“From what I can gather…” Storm spoke in his native language “…Between you three ‘boys’…” He deliberately emphasised, the word ‘boys’ to knock his sons back into their place “… You have gained possession of ‘The Knife’, ‘The Mirror’ and ‘The Sceptre’. He stepped closer, stroking his chin, amused.
Aston, Bane and Cassius watched their father cautious; Bane still comforted his bruised throat with one hand, his other curled around the hilt of his sword. Cassius blanched, both his hands were slick with blood, holding his streaming wound. Only Aston appeared strong enough to confront their father, should the cause arise.
Yet Storm silenced any conflict with words. He breathed in deeply savoring success, “At least you ‘used’ to own these items!” He smirked exaggerating the past tense. “They’re mine now.” Storm said simply, allowing his sons to finally see the error of their ways, that they had fought and lost not only their items, but also their trust in each other.
From: December 17th 2015
Anne Harrison 03.03.17